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Wylies - Past & Future… 1908 – A Year Of Tragedy And Invention! We
December 2008 Wylies - Past & Future… 1908 – A Year Of Tragedy And Invention! This is it – the final Centenary Flyer! How the year Many remarkable things happened during the year of 1908, but the most horrific th has flown by. We started in January with Dick occurred towards the end. On December 28 1908 Messina in Sicily experienced the th Wylie’s 94 birthday, and then in March celebrated worst earth quake ever recorded in Europe, followed by a tsunami. It registered a Dick and Jean’s Diamond Wedding Anniversary! Richter scale of 7 and killed over 75,000 people. One hundred years on, in the shadow of Mount Etna, 250,000 people now live in the city alone. Hopefully, with modern Our nurses held special nurse clinics with Centenary equipment, the local people should get plenty of warning before the next catastrophe. free gifts every month. We also had an extra- special Open Day this summer and a Centenary In 1908 a housewife, Melitta Bentz of Germany, started experimenting with circles of her Ball, both attended by members of the Wylie family. children’s blotting paper to prepare coffee. She went on to manufacturing coffee pots in Dick Wylie was the VIP at our Open Day. Like many 1912. Also the first commercially successful electric toaster was available one hundred of you he was interest in our display showing the years ago in the USA for $1.45, even though only 10% of US homes were wired for history of Wylies through the years –it even included electricity! Prohibition had yet to affect the USA but Iceland banned the sale of a photograph of his father’s old car! intoxicating beverages in 1908 and continued to do so until 1934. Tea bags and ‘teasmades’ seem fairly modern inventions but apparently not! Tea bags were pioneered by New York tea and coffee wholesaler Thomas Sullivan in 1908. It started when he sent samples of blends of tea in small hand sewn muslin and china-silk bags. The orders poured in and soon he was packing them by machine. The first ‘teasmade’ was registered by gunsmith Frank Clarke of Birmingham in 1902. Made of brass and copper, when the alarm clock rang, levers moved causing a match to strike, light an oil fire, heat a kettle, which then tilted pouring boiling water into a teapot! We do not have such a beautifully complicated device available today, but if you would like a cup of tea or coffee while at our Upminster surgery you are very welcome to help yourself from our machine in the waiting room! His father, Arthur, was born on a farm in Scotland and worked as a grocer before deciding to become a We’ve Always Employed The Best! veterinary surgeon. He qualified from Edinburgh When Arthur Wylie set up his plate in 1908, he, like most general practitioners of University and then moved down south, eventually the time, worked in a one-man practice. His son, Dick Wylie followed him into the being able to start his own practice in Grays. profession and eventually took over his father’s surgery. He then went into partnership with Dick Coulton and Eddie Dixon, giving the local pet owners the A good qualification was very important in 1908 as choice of attending surgeries in Upminster, Hornchurch or Grays. As the practices there was no welfare state to help folk who fell on grew busier assistants were employed, and later Arthur’s grandson David Wylie and hard times. In fact it was exactly 100 years ago that Hamish Wood also joined the partnership. Some clients will remember these David Lloyd George, Chancellor of the Exchequer in names. Certainly people who worked at Wylies always seem to remember the place the Liberal government, stated that he was with affection. Australian vet, Ian Hobson, is coming over to visit Dick and Jean determined to ‘lift the shadow of the workhouse from Wylie in January. He was the first Ozzie to work at Wylies - the first of many from the homes of the poor’. He introduced the Old Age the southern hemisphere! No doubt he will see a lot of changes! Pensions Act to provide between 1s and 5s per week to people over 70 years old, if their income Other past-assistants have gone on to become big names in the UK veterinary was less than 12s per week. An additional £16million world. One was Trevor Turner, who left to start his own practice in Northolt, lectured a year needed to be raised to pay for these pensions at veterinary congresses and married a lady famous as a leading light in the and this necessitated increases in taxation. The Veterinary Nursing Association. Another, Oliphant Jackson, became one of the first House of Lords tried to block the proposals, but after experts in ‘exotic medicine’ and taught many veterinary students the art of handling a long struggle Lloyd George succeeded. The 1911 snakes. Ray Butcher, now our senior partner here, started as a school boy seeing Parliament Act then restricted the power of the practice. He has since been President of both the BSAVA, (British Small Animal House of Lords to block any other legislation passed Veterinary Association), and FECAVA, (the European equivalent). He is also a by the House of Commons. veterinary advisor for WSPA (World Society for the Protection of Animals), and has won many awards worldwide for services to the veterinary profession. We are proud our practice has been serving the (Below: Dick Wylie & Ray Butcher at our Open Day) local community for 100 years, but we also know that the reason the practice has survived and grown through the last century is because it has moved with the times and tried to look after its clients as well as their pets. Longevity alone is not enough – after all Woolworths started 99 years ago! Let us know how you think we can improve in 2009 and we’ll give you a Wylie Centenary pen! Editor: Kathy Beasley Ps. Are you full of Christmas cheer? Spare a thought for the poor wild birds in this cold weather and also stray dogs and cats. Rescue centres always appreciate gifts of food.
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